Resene Architecture and Design Film Festival 2015

With New Zealand almost into the icy grip of winter it’s also film festival time. This year Resene is working with Rialto Cinemas and Clearly & Co to bring us the fourth Resene Architecture and Design Film Festival.

The movies are divided into four separate spheres: Architectural Perspectives, Design Inspiration, Experiments in Space, and Greenscapes.

My must-see picks for this year are screenings of two Sir Ian Athfield movies: Architect of Dreams directed by Geoffrey Cawthorn and Architect Athfield directed by Sam Neill.

The festival is screening in three New Zealand locations:

Wellington – The Embassy Theatre – 28 May – 10 Jun 2015

Dunedin – Rialto Cinemas Dunedin – 11 Jun – 21 Jun 2015

Christchurch – Academy Gold – 25 Jun – 8 Jul 2015

Download the festival programme here »

Visit the festival website here »




Corin Anderson

Introducing Corin

I am very pleased to welcome Corin Anderson to the studio as our new Architectural Technician.

Corin is Ngai Tahu; he grew up in Dunedin and Queenstown, and trained at Otago Polytechnic, graduating as an Architectural Technician.

He has worked in Christchurch for several years gaining experience in construction and architecture, and contributing to the rebuild. He finds working in Christchurch challenging but fulfilling. He particularly enjoys the relationships he’s built within the construction industry. His ambition is to become an architect; applying his talents in a design-focused practice is an essential step toward that goal.

Corin arrived in the studio mid-February, bringing with him a desire to refine and craft architectural detail and contribute to the success of projects, which aligns with our aim to think hard about space, and love the potential of architecture.

Welcome Corin!


Photograph: Chrissy Irvine

Judging for the 2015 NZIA Local Awards for Canterbury

This year I have been appointed Convenor of the NZIA Local Awards for Canterbury.

The jury comprises three architects and an engineer: Stuart Gardyne, Justin Leadbetter, Maria Chen and Helen Trappitt.

It will be fascinating to view the work that has been done in Canterbury over the past year, and how well the new buildings are re-shaping the new city of Christchurch.

Ian Athfield

Sir Ian Athfield

Ath’s death a few weeks ago took me by surprise. Although I knew he was unwell, his energy and enthusiasm must’ve masked just how unwell he was. It has taken until now for me to gain some perspective.

I first met Ath when I was fourteen years old, and he has since then been a constant presence in my architectural imagination. He taught me so much, from when I was an after school helper through to becoming a graduate and a practising architect in his office, his influence second only to my Dad’s. The wonderful thing about Ath was his ability to enrich and enliven relationships – his and his architecture’s relationship to the world, to people and places. The emotional power his work contains is a rare thing in contemporary architecture.


Tim Nees: Architect in Residence, Management Board Member of Studio Christchurch, convenor of the Canterbury Architectural Awards

Keeping busy: Tim’s other roles

Architect in Residence

I’ve been the Architect in Residence at the College of Engineering, University of Canterbury, since the end of July.

My main role is to facilitate closer engagement and collaboration between engineers and architects.

An interview was recently published on Scoop.

Read the article »

Management Board of Studio Christchurch

I’ve also been appointed to the Management Board of Studio Christchurch, a cooperative group between universities in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

The Management Board sets extracurricular projects based on urban research and proposed interventions in Christchurch city.

Studio Christchurch Website »

Convenor of the Canterbury Architectural Awards

I am also on the Canterbury Branch Committee of the NZIA and over summer will be the convenor of the Canterbury Architectural Awards.

NZIA Awards Website »

FESTA 2014

We proudly sponsored FESTA, the Festival of Transitional Architecture, which was held over the week of 20-27 October including Labour weekend.

The main event is called City-Ups and was a sensational spectacle of temporary urban structures, sound and light, as you can see from these photos.

If you’re in Christchurch or don’t want to miss next years, sign up for news on the FESTA site in the form at the bottom of the page

65 Cambridge Terrace, Christchurch, New Zealand

65 Cambridge Terrace

new work studio / tim nees architects moved into the iconic Warren & Mahoney building a few weeks ago, and we’re starting to feel settled.

We occupy a narrow half-gabled space near the top of the building overlooking the courtyard and pool, a space rich in natural colours and textures, shadow and light, and history.

Sharing the building with other architects and landscape architects adds to the studio atmosphere, and provides a focused and inspiring place to work.